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The tributes have been flowing for Sir Ian Axford, the eminent New Zealand astrophysicist who died this week aged 77.

Like fellow New Zealander Sir William Pickering, who led unmanned space exploration missions for NASA, Sir Ian was a hugely respected figure in the space science community and in the 1980s helped lead space missions involving NASA, European Space Agency and Russian (then USSR) scientists.

The obituaries pages in the country’s major newspapers devoted large amounts of space to paying tirbute to Sir Ian. Below are a selection of them: